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#211503 - 12/05/05 04:26 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
ButterflyPalm Offline
Enigma

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
I see in your profile that your last name is Goforth; well, I am sure you know what I am about to say, so I am not saying it, except to say, at your age, you ain't seen nothing yet.

There is a good chance you will be sent to Iraq after your BMT; when you step on American soil again, tell us how lucky you really are.

All of us, smart or stupid, have our life's little wars to fight.

There is an old chinese saying which goes like this -- stupid people have their own special kind of happiness. So it seems the 'problem' is not new after all.

I chose that signature because I've found out a long time ago that being 'right' does not necessarily make you happy. The former is flitting, the latter stays a while longer, at least.

You will find that as you advance in age, say passed 55, (read nearer to the grave) nothing, absolutely nothing is more important than happiness.
_________________________
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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#211504 - 12/05/05 08:09 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: Bushi_no_ki]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
"Superior intelligence breeds superior ambition."

It's all about...ego. The toughest fight you'll ever have.

About jobs: I know plenty of seniors, high school and college, who graduate into unemployment. It's the economics of our times.

About happiness: like Brian said, I know plenty of unhappy people...rich and poor...smart and stupid. Being smart doesn't solve your problems, it just adds an extra layer of complexity to your life...you still deal with the same things everybody else does. I don't know what makes other people happy, but after 40 plus years of crap I've recently found some things that cultivate a happy outlook, and that lasts through adverse times:

1. Smiling..it makes me feel good. I don't care how stupid it sounds...just do it as often as you can...a biofeedback loop of some sort.

2. Sitting still in a pleasant place. My favorite types of places are outside/nature, empty churches and libraries...and of course...the dojo. It is a 'centering' exercise.

3. Surrounding myself with people that are 'good' for me. People that bring lightness to my heart.

4. Self-cultivation. I think one finds happiness with peace, and that comes from an internal journey.


Edited by harlan (12/05/05 08:26 AM)

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#211505 - 12/05/05 09:20 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: harlan]
oldman Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/28/04
Posts: 5884
As for me I'm an idiot. Everyday is Christmas and every meal is a feast.

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#211506 - 12/05/05 09:22 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: oldman]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
More like...an Idiot/Savant!

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#211507 - 12/05/05 10:02 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: harlan]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Another issue that hasn't really been brought up is Peers.

A genius has few peers, least of all themselves. These geniuses you've spoken of have all had amazing concepts, but their actual interaction with the world was less than stellar.

More often than not, those who are brillant in one field or another, have trouble removing themselves from their own head. This causes great problems with their happiness level, because just like anyone else. They want to find friends, love, companionship. If you are to wrapped up in mathmematical equations or strategic movements, or art, or martial arts, or writing. You find that you alienate all people in your life by accident. Not because you do not want them there, but because the lightning crashes against the walls of your skull and you are pulled into your own mind. You write on whatever you can find, walls, floor, your own arm. When you break your reverie, you are alone... By no innate desire of your own.

You find yourself resting in a very snug hermetic cave, placed there by your own obsession and "brillance". In truth, isn't genius just another illness? Another form of psychosis that although breeds amazing and sometimes beautiful creations. Ends up causing chronic misery among those whom bear its laurels?


Thats the lonliness factor, and I think a lot of people have the general right idea. Those who cannot see the mechanics of the governmental/societal machine will usually be "surprised" when good things happen and "Disappointed" when bad things do. But, those are transitory emotions because something "new" will come about soon. To those who can see the gears, they must be able to see what is "coming" before it does. Thus, no good and no bad surprises. In the end, would breed a kind of apathy wouldn't it?

Such a silly little term genius is. Intelligence is the ability to understand the logical movements of our world. Yet, the emotional ripples are the ones that are least understood by those who are supposedly gifted geniuses.

I wonder how many of them, honestly, when approached would've traded their gifts for the ability to be blissfully unaware and happy with the simplicities...

That does raise the question though, can a Genius become enlightened in this lifetime?

If a "Genius" is unable to remove the attachments to their field of study, or shrug off the burden of their own concious mind. Will they ever be able to move past it and allow their thoughts to still?

Maybe that is the source of their unhappiness, somewhere deep in their psyche they know that they will never move beyond the concious mind. That would make me unhappy knowing Like a splinter in my eye socket. Not being able to see where it was, but definately feeling its burn.
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#211508 - 12/05/05 10:11 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: phoenixsflame]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
Well, leaving the topics of alienation and social skills out of it:

Well, who are one's 'peers'? Again, it is about...ego. If you think of 'peers' as 'class' you can see how hollow that interaction can be. Fill your days with interactions with your peers, and go home to an empty house. Where is the happiness then?

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#211509 - 12/05/05 10:39 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: harlan]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Quote:

Well, leaving the topics of alienation and social skills out of it:

Well, who are one's 'peers'? Again, it is about...ego. If you think of 'peers' as 'class' you can see how hollow that interaction can be. Fill your days with interactions with your peers, and go home to an empty house. Where is the happiness then?





Yes. Thats exactly what I just said.

But, the ego of a genius is one that is gained not because of their thoughts, but because of the elevation of their status to "genius"...

But, the destruction of ego is at the fore-front of buddhist precepts. Soo... its a given that would have to be taken care of.

And come on people. What about the question of Genius V. Enlightenment? Is it one or the other? (Obviously a person whose a Genius with Buddhism would have a leg up to enlightenment... Or would they? ;D)
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#211510 - 12/05/05 10:49 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: phoenixsflame]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
Sounds like one of the forbidden 'either/or' threads!

Whatever floats your boat. Are you happy with intellect? Fine. But the one thing I have read is that you can't think your way to 'enlightenment'. Or to put it differently, intelligence can only get you so far.

I have encountered online a lot of what I call 'sutrists' who don't seem very 'realized'. Intellectually brilliant folks that I feel are trapped in delusion by the very pursuit of knowledge.

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#211511 - 12/05/05 11:00 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: harlan]
phoenixsflame Offline
Member

Registered: 11/12/05
Posts: 402
Loc: Chicago, Illinois
Quote:

Sounds like one of the forbidden 'either/or' threads!

Whatever floats your boat. Are you happy with intellect? Fine. But the one thing I have read is that you can't think your way to 'enlightenment'. Or to put it differently, intelligence can only get you so far.

I have encountered online a lot of what I call 'sutrists' who don't seem very 'realized'. Intellectually brilliant folks that I feel are trapped in delusion by the very pursuit of knowledge.




Of course its a beautifully forbidden thread...


Mmm, Forbidden Fruit...



I think you hit it right on the nose.

So, doesn't that extend to everything then?

You can't think yourself happy. You can't think yourself complete...

So many people forget that, though you may be intelligent, it is meaningless because thoughts and conceptions, theories and intellect pose only rhetoric for the mind.

They don't actually bear any fruit, beyond the basic questioning of buddhism.

Without questioning everything, we obviously can't really in our hearts study Buddhism. But, unless we try to *feel* after we've questioned, we're kind of in a catch 22.
_________________________
While everything changes, nothing is truly lost.

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#211512 - 12/05/05 11:04 AM Re: Why are geniuses never truly happy? [Re: phoenixsflame]
harlan Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/31/04
Posts: 6665
Loc: Amherst, MA
Yup. Many people define themselves with their intellect. To realize that intelligence is nothing, to let go of ego, is terrifying. Therefore, the grasping...and the unhappiness.

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